Ontological theory and torture

People have different views on whether torture is justified.

Ontological theory and torture

Definition of Torture Torture includes such practices as searing with hot irons, burning at the stake, electric shock treatment to the genitals, cutting out parts of the body, e. For an attempt to make some distinctions in this area see Lauritzen Most of these practices, but not all of them, involve the infliction of extreme physical pain.

For example, sleep deprivation does not necessarily involve the infliction of extreme physical pain. However, all of these practices involve the infliction of extreme physical suffering, e.

Indeed, all of them involve the intentional infliction of extreme physical suffering on some non-consenting and defenceless person.

If A accidentally sears B with hot irons A has not tortured B; intention is a necessary condition for torture.

Further, if A intentionally sears B with hot irons and B consented to this action, then B has not been tortured. Indeed, even if B did not consent, but B could have physically prevented A from searing him then B has not been tortured. That is, in order for it to be an instance of torture, B has to be defenceless.

Michael Davis thinks not Alternatively, assume that B is in a hotel room in another country and live sounds and images of the torture are intentionally transmitted to him in his room by the torturer in such a way that he cannot avoid seeing and hearing them other than by leaving the room after having already seen and heard them.

However, A is being tortured for the purpose of causing B to disclose certain information to the torturer. B is certainly undergoing extreme mental suffering. Nevertheless, B is surely not himself being tortured. To see this, reflect on the following revised version of the scenario.

Ontological theory and torture

In that case surely he is not torturing B either. Consider, for example, a mock execution or a situation in which a victim with an extreme rat phobia lies naked on the ground with his arms and legs tied to stakes while dozens of rats are placed all over his body and face.

However, such suffering at one remove is in general less palpable, and more able to be resisted and subjected to rational control; after all, it is not my body that is being electrocuted, my life that is being threatened, or my uncontrollable extreme fear of rats that is being experienced.

An exception to this general rule might be cases involving the torture of persons with whom the sufferer at one remove has an extremely close relationship and a very strong felt duty of care, e.

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At any rate, if as appears to be the case, there are some cases of mental torture then the above definition will need to be extended, albeit in a manner that does not admit all cases of the infliction of extreme mental suffering as being instances of torture. In various national and international laws, e.

Such a distinction needs to be made. For one thing, some treatment, e.

Foundation of Ontological Philosophy

For another thing, some inhumane treatment does not involve physical suffering to any great extent, and is therefore not torture, properly speaking albeit, the treatment in question may be as morally bad as, or even morally worse than, torture.

Some forms of the infliction of mental suffering are a case in point, as are some forms of morally degrading treatment, e. So torture is the intentional infliction of extreme physical suffering on some non-consenting, defenceless person.

Is this an adequate definition of torture? Perhaps not, albeit some theorists, such as Kammadhere to this kind of conception. Consider the following imaginary counter-example. A woman who is being raped but who is, nevertheless, still in control of the movement of her jaws sinks her teeth into the face of her attacker causing him excruciating pain against which he is defenceless, until finally he desists.

What is Inherently Wrong with Torture?

Surely the woman is not torturing her attacker but rather defending herself by inflicting excruciating pain on her attacker. Evidently what is missing in the account thus far is the relationship between torture and autonomy: Is this now an adequate definition of torture?

Here we need to consider the purpose or point of torture. Convention identifies four reasons for torture, namely: Certainly, these are all possible purposes of torture, as is torture performed for sadistic pleasure. For with respect to each one of these four purposes, it is not the case that in general torture is undertaken for that purpose, e.

In the case of interrogatory torture of an enemy spy, for example, in order to obtain the desired information the torturer must first break the will of the victim.

Hence torture as punishment does not consist — as do other forms of punishment — of a determinate set of specific, pre-determined and publicly known acts administered over a definite and limited time period.

A second consideration is as follows. Consider the torture victim who holds out and refuses to confess or provide the information sought by the torturer.The Logic of Torture Keith Burgess-Jackson The Wall Street Journal Wednesday, December 5, Why the subject of torture provokes so much yelling and so little argumentation.

Ontological philosophy is a new way of doing philosophy. Implausible though it may sound at this late date, after more than 2 millennia of trying, there is a new way of doing philosophy.

Ontological philosophy is the "metaphysical realism," the "One True Theory," and the "God's Eye View" of the world whose possibility is denied by such so-called internal realists. Utilitarianism and ontological theory can be viewed as theories that support such a violent act like torture.

However, the deontological theory does not support torture. In addition, there are conventions, organizations, and laws that prohibit torture because they strongly feel . Ontological definition is - of or relating to ontology.

How to use ontological in a sentence. of or relating to ontology; relating to or based upon being or existence See the full definition. SINCE Menu. JOIN MWU Gain access to thousands of additional definitions . Teleological theory could be used to justify torture. This theory "determines the moral worth of an action by the extent to which that action accomplishes a purpose or an end" (Souryal, , p.

71). If the consequences from torturing someone for information ends with a good result and information can be used for the greater good, then torture.

Foundation of Ontological Philosophy